Likud MK Tzipi Hotovely_311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud), chairwoman of the Knesset Committee on the Status of
Women, demanded on Monday that security guards be required to leave their
weapons at work, following a report that 24 people were killed in the last
decade by guns belonging to off-duty security guards.
The report was
issued by Woman to Woman, the Jerusalem Shelter for Battered
“Security companies seem to have received an exemption from the
law that forbids guards to remove their weapons from their place of work,”
The Likud MK said she would ask Public Security Minister
Yitzhak Aharonovitch to enforce the law and instruct security companies to
allocate a secure place for guards to check their weapons.
She gave the
Public Security Ministry two months to implement the instructions. Otherwise,
the Committee on the Status of Women will propose a bill making security
companies responsible for accidents involving their employees’
“Women are murdered because security companies do not enforce
the rules and give everyone weapons,” said MK Zehava Gal-On (Meretz), who
initiated the committee meeting.
Gal-On pointed out that security
companies current hold 130,000 weapons, about 40 percent of the guns in the
However, MK Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) took the security
guards’ side of the debate, saying that they earned minimum wage or less, and
that Hotovely’s demands would require them to “waste time” in order to check in
“Miserable workers also deserve representation,” he said.
“The extra half hour will make it more difficult for them to put food on the
Hotovely responded that the time it took to check in guns should
be included in working hours, so guards would be compensated, and that saving
human lives was most important.
Moshe Dayan, who heads the Public
Security Ministry’s department for gun licenses, said there should be a more
intensive selection process for security guards. He also explained that the
ministry sought to reduce the number of weapons available to private security
“We’re doing everything we can to prevent this phenomenon,”
Dayan said. “However, in some instances, the [employer] can permit a worker to
bring a weapon home. It is within his authority.”